Vice President Joe Biden doesn't say for sure whether or not he'll run for president on a GQ profile on Thursday, but you can tell he kind of wants to. With all his hedging to GQ's Jeanne Marie Laskas, he reminds us that despite his propensity to joke and be joked about, Biden's also an ambitious politician. By the way, he does not like the implication of some of those jokes.
He answers the big question this way:
"I can die a happy man never having been president of the United States of America. But it doesn't mean I won't run . . . The judgment I’ll make is, first of all, am I still as full of as much energy as I have now — do I feel this? No. 2: Do I think I’m the best person in the position to move the ball? And, you know, we’ll see where the hell I am."
Hillary Clinton, who hasn't announced whether she'll run, is considered the frontrunner among Democrats. But the Washington Post's Chris Cillizza wrote on Thursday that Biden will "absolutely" run if she doesn't.
Biden uses the word "Clinton" once in the interview, and he stops himself short. He starts discussing the 2012 Vice Presidential Debate: "I never speak about anything I don’t know a great deal about. That I haven’t worked like hell for. But that’s not what you’d expect. You might expect Clinton to do that. . . . Well, I shouldn’t. I’m getting — ." The exchange is awkward. Biden may be ready to start talking about running for president, but he's not ready to talk about running against a Clinton. Update: Though it's ambiguous in GQ's story which Clinton it was that Biden was referring, the vice president's office tells us that Biden was referring Bill Clinton.